Adobe Spark

I evaluated several options before I decided to review Adobe Spark as my third emerging technology

 

First – the ones that didn’t make the list.  

 

Playposit was suggested as an interactive video and assessment tool that integrates with Blackboard.  I was drawn to the concept of how to do an assessment, but when I went to test it, realized it was similar to Kaltura and Screencastify.  I’ve used both of those in the past and felt that I just don’t like myself in videos (yet, since practice makes perfect)  and I just keep editing and editing.  Since Kaltura already integrates with BB, I wasn’t feeling the need to continue down this path. 

 

I was also interested in checking out //www.gosoapbox.com/ because it mentioned using a confusion barometer for teachers to see when students are confused.  It looked like it would only work for synchronous classrooms and I think I would find looking at the confusion barometer confusing!  Or distracting at best.  What do you mean they don’t get it – aren’t they listening?  On to the next. 

 

I have a desire to learn how to do more with both Google Maps and Google Expeditions as I think those will be awesome tools for my class but those seemed to require more time than I had at the moment, so I defaulted to (re)evaluating Adobe Spark. 

 

I’ve used Spark for a couple of Digital Storytelling assignments and really enjoyed the last one that I developed as part of a covid19 assignment.  I also used it to develop a PLN map for my F431 class (see my separate blog post although I think I could improve on this one when I had more time).

 

While I’ve used Spark to create products over a number of hours,  I don’t feel as if I’ve fully tested the tool because of the diversity of possibilities.  Spark is a really fun storytelling tool – I found the video more enjoyable to make than the individual pages.  There are also options for presentations, slideshows, and photo collages as well as posts for Instagram and Facebook.

 

Key Advantages

  • Free! 
  • Great visual tool with a number of options
  • Leverages royalty-free images and music
  • Advocates speak to it as being a great branding tool, although I’ve never used it that way. 

 

Barriers

  • It lacks some flexibility or maybe it was just me learning the tool.  I wasn’t always able to get it to do what I was looking for.   
  • One may be stuck with the Adobe Logo so are you really creating your own brand or advertising theirs?

 

Perceived usefulness

  • I think I liked this better as a creator than for use in education. I think I’ve only touched the surface of what it can do.  I don’t have the breadth of working with other similar types of tools, although the whole gamut of graphic design and how we influence through presentation is personally interesting. This program whets my appetite to see what more I could create. 
  •  I haven’t figured out a way in which it would be more useful than PowerPoint in what I’m asking my students to do in creating a presentation.  I do think storytelling is such an important part of what we do so I continue to want to learn to do it better and it may be that I could offer them more options like Prezi, Spark, and Sway to help tell the story they want to tell.  Maybe it’s time to take a risk. 

 

5 thoughts on “Adobe Spark

  1. In my initial post of the review of Biteable, I said I preferred that resource over Adobe Spark. Now that time has passed a bit, and I’ve revisited Adobe Spark, I think that I like the flexibility that Adobe Spark offers more. You said it took a couple of hours, was that for one video or for more multiple products?

    1. Morgan, I didn’t really track my time, but it was probably 2-3 hours to track down the photos in Unsplash that I wanted to use to tell the story. Once I had the pictures, then it was easy to assemble and I continued to edit with the music and the timing for each slide. I’m not that adventurous with using my own voice to tell the story, which I see as one of my growth opportunities!

  2. I keep hearing and seeing good things about Adobe spark. I think I might have to spend some time on it. I really like the look of your end product. I am curious is there a way to add narration or is it mostly slide show style?

    1. When I used Adobe Spark for my Digital Storytelling class, I was able to add my own voice as narration to each slide. I remember this is the part that I liked best about this program. It was easy to include and it added a personal and professional touch to the video.

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